Landlords sue CDC over illegal eviction ban
October 23, 2020
Akron, Ohio; October 23, 2020: In a lawsuit filed today, landlords are challenging the nationwide ban on evictions imposed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The landlords say that the CDC’s ban violates the agency’s statutory and constitutional authority.
“The CDC’s moratorium is a sweeping expansion of federal power over the rights of property owners nationwide,” said Steve Simpson, a senior attorney at Pacific Legal Foundation. “Fortunately, Congress never gave the CDC that authority, and the Constitution’s separation of powers does not allow an agency to make up the law as it goes along. The courts shouldn’t allow the CDC’s power grab to continue.”
Eric and Lila Wohlwend own and manage rental properties through their two businesses, Skyworks Ltd. and Clear Sky Realty. One of Skyworks’ tenants who signed a lease over the summer stopped paying rent in October. The tenant ignored offers to work out a payment plan and instead submitted a signed CDC declaration alleging impact from COVID-19. No explanation of the impact was given.
Skyworks, other Ohio landlords, and the National Association of Home Builders are represented free of charge by Pacific Legal Foundation and the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law.
“The government can’t single out one group of people — landlords in this case — and force them to bear the economic burdens of the pandemic,” Simpson said.
PLF filed Skyworks Ltd., et al. v. Centers for Disease Control in the U.S. District Court for the District of Northern Ohio. In addition to the lawsuit, a motion for preliminary injunction will be filed to halt CDC’s unconstitutional moratorium.
Pacific Legal Foundation is a national nonprofit legal organization that defends Americans threatened by government overreach and abuse. Since our founding in 1973, we challenge the government when it violates individual liberty and constitutional rights. With active cases in 34 states plus Washington, D.C., PLF represents clients in state and federal courts, with 14 victories out of 16 cases litigated at the U.S. Supreme Court.